The Douro – Portugal’s River of Gold with Viking Cruises: Day 1

Edouardo VII Park, LisbonToday my wife and I commenced our third cruise with Viking River Cruises in as many years. This year we are going to cruise along Portugal’s Douro river on Viking River Cruises’ latest longship, the Viking Hemming.

As is customary with most Viking River Cruises we have a pre-cruise hotel package in the Portuguese capital Lisbon.

This afternoon we flew from London Heathrow with TAP Portugal scheduled flight and our transfer from Lisbon airport to the 5-star Hotel Tivoli Lisboa was included in our package.

Viking River Cruises pre-cruise documentation is of very high standard and includes a comprehensive full cruise itinerary, guide book and relevant travel documents – all contained in a practical pouch.

On arrival in Lisbon we were instantly greeted by an easily identifiable Viking representative and in a very short period were being transported to our hotel. What an excellent start to our holiday. Efficiently and effortlessly our hotel keys and welcoming letter were handed to us before we left the transfer coach and all that was needed was to identify our luggage to the hotel porter.

Terrace bar - Tivoli Lisboa HotelThe Hotel Tivoli Lisboa is ideally situated centrally on Avenida da Liberdade. Early evening there was a welcome meeting and programme briefing leaving us a couple of hours to explore the immediate locality and get a feel for this interesting city.

Prior to leaving the UK we had done some research on both Lisbon and the hotel. One feature of the hotel is its rooftop bar and ‘Terracio’ restaurant for which we had made a reservation some days before departure.

The panoramic views over the city from the top floor terrace restaurant certainly lived up to expectations and the atmosphere exceeded them. Portugal is famous for its seafood, and we enjoyed an excellent seafood dinner an extraordinary location.

Tomorrow we take our first of Viking’s included excursions, and we are also looking forward to some free time to explore other areas of this interesting city.

Silver Travel Advisor recommends Viking River Cruises.

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Richard Okill

Retired naval officer & businessman

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